The Inn was delighted to receive our senior Royal Bencher, His Majesty The King who visited Gray’s Inn this morning.
His Majesty met a small group of staff and Members in the Hall before touring The Walks. Residents, tenants (including students at the City Junior School) and staff of the Inn gathered in South Square and outside The Walks to welcome our Royal guest.
On arrival at the Benchers’ Entrance, His Majesty was met by His Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant of Greater London Sir Kenneth Olisa, who presented our Master Treasurer, Sir Peter Gross, the Vice Treasurer, Lady Justice Nicola Davies and the Under Treasurer, Brigadier Stephen Cartwright.
“Today’s valued visit, reinforcing the connection between Gray’s Inn and our most senior Royal Bencher, is of the greatest significance for Gray’s diverse community, together with its key values and activities in education and the Rule of Law, domestically and internationally, including the Commonwealth.” The Treasurer, Sir Peter Gross
The majority of the visit was spent in Hall where Members and staff were able to speak directly with The King. Students, barristers and Benchers had the opportunity to engage His Majesty in discussion about education, outreach, challenges in the legal profession and the future, and the positive role the Inn plays throughout a legal career with the Inn and how vital their Membership has been during their careers at the Bar.
This is not the first time The King has visited Gray’s Inn. The then Prince Charles visited in 1993 and awarded prizes to students in Hall, including The Prince of Wales Scholarship.
The King was appointed as a Royal Bencher of the Inn in February 1975. To commemorate this occasion the Inn commissioned a painting of The then Prince of Wales by artist June Mendoza, which was completed in 1979 and is permanently on display at the Inn. His Majesty even did a sitting for the artist on his 30th birthday in 1978. Today will have been the third time the King has seen his portrait in situ at the Inn.
Photographer: Liz Isles